Osteoarthritis (stiff and painful joints) affects an estimated 27 million Americans. Most people over age 60 have osteoarthritis to some degree, but its severity varies. . Regard­ing its causes and correction, hair analysis offers excellent information. While anti-inflammatory drug therapy is the most common treatment, mineral patterns reveal many correctable causes. Among the most common are glandular imbal­ance, deposition of toxic metals and nutrient deficiencies. A pattern of tissue breakdown is another important contributor. Obesity and expo­sure to chemicals are other factors to consider.

Slow Oxidation

Sluggish thyroid and adrenal activity are closely associated with arthritis. The adrenal glands produce cortisone and cortisol, anti-inflammatory hormones. When the adrenal glands are weak, hormone production decreases. Inflammation of the joints is often one result. This type of arthritic pain is often worse in the morning. As the day goes on, the adrenal glands may function better and the pain often lessens.

Also in slow oxidizers, deposits of calcium may form in the joints. High hair calcium often indicates abnormal tissue deposition. Adequate sodium and potassium are needed to keep calcium in solution. When these are low due to adrenal insufficiency, calcium leaves the blood and precipitates into the tissues.

Toxic metal poisoning is also associated with slow oxidation. The body lacks the energy needed to remove toxic metals. Deficient vital minerals are replaced by toxic substitutes. Metals including copper and iron are well known to settle in the joints. Here they may cause pain and inflam­mation.

The presence of toxic metals also destroy other nutrients. Vitamin C, for example, is deacti­vated by an excess of copper. Vitamin C is required for regeneration of joint cartilage. Thus toxic substances act as anti-nutrients, interfering with maintenance of vital body tissues.

Slow oxidizers often have deficient digestion. Even if they eat a good diet, absorption may be impaired by low hydrochloric acid and often intestinal infections. The joints require many nutrients, vitamins, minerals and fatty acids. Many, like zinc and sulfur, are deficient in aver­age diets.

Protein is also very important for joint regen­eration. Joint cartilage is protein and must be renewed continuously. A low hair phosphorus level often indicates impaired protein metabolism. This may be due to dietary deficiency, zinc or copper imbalance or impaired digestion for another reason such as a stressful lifestyle.

Energy production is often low in the slow oxidizer. Energy is needed to rebuild all tissues, including of course the joints.

Fast Oxidation

Those with a fast oxidation rate are also prone to arthritic disease. It can be acute and very pain­ful. Their bodies often are slightly too acidic, contributing to the breakdown of joint tissue. Often they require more copper, zinc and magne­sium, nutrients needed for cartilage and to avoid inflammation.

Many fast oxidizers have low sod­ium/­potassium ratios. This pattern, called an inversion, is associated with tissue catabolism. Cells do not regenerate as fast as they are lost. While it can affect any body tissue, catabolism often affects the joints. Discs and cartilages may break down, leading to serious disorders.

Fast oxidizers are also prone to tension and high stress. Calcium and magnesium, needed to relax, are often deficient in these individuals. Excess tension may add stress to already weak­ened joints.

Fast oxidizers often do not eat correctly. Their metabolism requires extra fats. Many live on mostly carbohydrates, which further deplete their bodies. They also speed up an already overheated metabolism. In addition, many are fortified with iron which can contribute to inflammation.

Other fast oxidizers eat poor quality fats, such as margarine and refined vegetable oils. These are deficient in omega-3 fatty acids which contrib­utes to inflammation. Excellent sources of omega-3 fatty acids are; fatty fish such as salmon and anchovy, cod liver oil, flaxseeds, walnuts, chia seeds, and to a lesser degree, but still good include pastured eggs, omega‑3‑enriched eggs, meats and dairy products from grass‑fed animals, hemp seeds, and vegetables like spinach, Brussels sprouts and soybeans. Poor quality food, so common in food stores, is an important contributor to all arthritis.

Stress, Obesity, Allergies and Exercise

Obesity can contribute to joint disease by placing more weight on the joints. Causes include imbalanced body chemistry, diet and other stress factors. Poor quality food contributes, as it does not satisfy the appetite. One eats more and more, attempting to get one's nutrients. Since they have been removed, the unknowing eater just eats more.

Both fast and slow oxidizers are prone to obesity, though for different reasons. Sluggish thyroids and adrenals can lead to weight gain. In fast oxidizers, water retention is common. High insulin and cortisone also lead to fat deposition.

Food allergies, a contributor to obesity, can also directly affect the joints. Many people report improvement when wheat and dairy or other allergic foods are removed from the diet.

Excessive activity and exercise is occasionally a cause. Running and high-impact activities may in fact be harmful. Often one doesn't realize it until the damage is done. Especially if there are structural misalignments, too much exercise can be detrimental.

Toxic Chemicals

Everyone in America is exposed to harmful chemicals. They are on the foods, in the water and air, and in many products in contact with the body. We live with thousands of harmful chemi­cals, from fluoride to pesticides. They affect the joints by a variety of mechanisms. Some are simply stored in the joints, where they cause their damage.

Others act as anti-nutrients, producing defi­ciencies and imbalances. They may impair diges­tion, absorption or utilization of vital elements needed for joint health. Often toxic chemicals poison the thyroid and adrenal glands. This in turn leads to many health problems. Others affect the immune system, allowing infections to remain. Along with avoidance of chemicals, the infrared sauna is recommended for anyone suffering from arthritis.

Chronic Infections

More attention is being paid to the presence of chronic infections. The focus may be in the mouth, in root canals and cavitations. Other common sites are the sinuses, bladder and bronch­ials. Bacteria and fungi produce toxins that often affect the joints. It won't show up on x-rays and you may have few other symptoms.

Sometimes a hair analysis will tip one off with a low sodium/potassium ratio. Most often, how­ever, the infections show up as one cleans up the diet and lifestyle and balancing body chemistry. As adaptive energy builds, the body begins to fight the infections. Often a flare-up or retracing occurs, in which the infection becomes acute. Usually it resolves itself without the need for medical intervention.

The process can take a number of years. Often there are layers of infections one on top of another. As one is healed, the next is exposed. This is why we say there is a time factor in heal­ing. With a scientific health building program, most cases of arthritis improve. Patience and persistence may be required, but the results are well worth the effort.

This material is for educational purposes only
The preceding statements have not been evaluated by the
Food and Drug Administration
This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

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